Maybe you have a wealth of experience and one (or multiple) businesses, but you just haven’t used LinkedIn before. It happens. Then 2018 rolled around, and you took the bold decision, that if you’re doing any B2B marketing or networking, you need to be on LinkedIn.
Not many professionals say, “don’t see the need to waste time on LinkedIn.” But I do know a number of business owners and CEOs that feel they missed the boat the first time around, and now don’t know if or how to start.
First off, there is no ‘if’. If you own a company, then whether you want sales or new recruits (and the correct answer is – yes, I need both) then you need to be on LinkedIn. So, here is what you need to know.
If the prospect of connecting to 500 million users (yes that’s half a Billion with a ‘B’) seems like a good idea, prepare to get the nuts and bolts of starting your very own LinkedIn profile. Shall we begin?
Join LinkedIn by:
- Go to www.linkedin.com.
- Enter your real First Name, Last Name, email address, and unique password.
- Specify your country of residence, zip code, employment status, job title, and your company name (if you’re a serial entrepreneur, then start with one company and you can add another later on).
Once you’ve created the bare bones of your LinkedIn profile, you still have some housekeeping to perform. Since LinkedIn is primarily a place for professional networking, it’s also a place for authenticity.
It’s OK to list as much experience and background information as possible because that is how you’re going to build your gigantic network from which to find connections.
Your Network consists of all LinkedIn users who share any portion of your background, industry, or demographic detail.
Your Connections are users with whom you intentionally connect after making a request and vice versa.
So, let’s dive right in – what will you need to complete your LinkedIn Profile?
- LinkedIn will ask if you want to connect with existing users – pick and choose.
- LinkedIn will ask if you wish to invite people from your email contacts to connect on LinkedIn. Use your judgment here; not everyone may be into social media as much as you are now.
- Complete your work experience, starting with current and going backward.
- You can add links or files to each position – create a portfolio for others to see!
- Complete your educational history (again, building your network and potential connections).
- Upload an image of yourself. Do NOT use that mobile snapshot someone took of you at the Renaissance Festival; this is your professional profile, and your image should reflect that clearly.
- Add your skills. You can add up to 50 skills, and if LinkedIn doesn’t already have one in its coffers, you can create one and enter it. Don’t overshoot here, as people will look at your skills to discover what you actually know, so try to keep it to 20 or less.
Beyond that, it’s just about adjusting your settings (email notifications, adding your other social media accounts, etc.) and you can start engaging! I would absolutely recommend completing ALL of the above steps before beginning involvement in Groups or commenting/sharing updates… people will view your profile and we all know the first impression counts.
If you would like to know how best to capitalize on your LinkedIn profile, or how best to increase sales or improve your recruitment effort, then you should come to one of our TAB peer-boards. Give us a call today or drop us an email to find out of a TAB board is right for you.